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Environmental News

Rich countries fall $10bn short in climate finance pledges

By: Bloomberg     6th October 2021 Rich countries are racing to close a climate-finance shortfall of at least $10-billion, with a handful of European nations planning to increase their pledges this month ahead of crucial talks in Glasgow, Scotland, according to people familiar with the plans. Over a decade ago, developed countries... 

Fortescue sets Scope 3 targets, hopes green hydrogen will help

By: Esmarie Iannucci     6th October 2021 Iron-ore major Fortescue Metals this week announced a target to achieve net zero Scope 3 emissions by 2040, addressing emissions across its entire global value chain, including crude steel manufacturing which accounts for 98% of the company’s Scope 3 emissions. The company told shareholders... 

Image shows Fortsescue's iron-ore operations

Eskom is now world’s biggest sulphur dioxide emitter, CREA says 

By: Bloomberg     5th October 2021 Eskom Holdings, South Africa’s coal-reliant power utility, has become the world’s biggest emitter of sulphur dioxide, a pollutant linked to ailments ranging from asthma to heart attacks, the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA) said. Eskom produced 1 600 kilotons of the pollutant in... 

Eskom Coal Fired Power station

Local furnace builder playing its part in global urban mining

By: Darren Parker     5th October 2021 Foundry and engineering company Thos Begbie is supporting recycling and the circular economy by supplying specialist critical components for pyrometallurgical smelting in furnaces designed for reclaiming rare metals. Reclaiming rare metals from waste – called urban mining – involves extracting... 

A photo of a Thos Begbie smelter component
SPECIALISED APPLICATIONS Owing to the complexity of extracting so many different metals, the design of smelters for e-waste processing is more complex than usual

COP26 must unlock climate support from developed to developing countries – Creecy 

By: Terence Creamer     4th October 2021 South Africa’s Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy says the COP26 climate talks scheduled for Glasgow, Scotland, in November need to prioritise the securing of finance, technology and capacity building support from developed to developing countries. Addressing a... 

 	Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy

Made-from-carbon-dioxide concrete, lululemons and diamonds spark investor excitement

By: Reuters     4th October 2021 What do diamonds, sunglasses, high-end lululemon sportswear and concrete have to do with climate change? They can all be made using carbon dioxide (CO2), locking up the planet warming gas. And tech startups behind these transformations are grabbing investor attention. 

Durban chemical company had no environmental authorisation to operate plant, report finds 

By: News24Wire      4th October 2021 United Phosphorus Limited (UPL) had no environmental authorisation to operate its Cornubia chemical factory, nor did it obtain risk assessment and planning permissions as required by environmental and municipal by-laws, a preliminary report has found. Forestry, Fisheries and Environment Minister... 

Carbon tax ineffective against major emitters

By: Darren Parker     1st October 2021 South Africa’s “laughably weak and ineffective” carbon tax regime is no disincentive to carbon-intensive businesses, such as integrated chemicals and energy company Sasol, environmental activist organisation Greenpeace Africa climate and energy campaigner Thandile Chinyavanhu tells Engineering... 

A photo of a Sasol plant emitting pollution into the air while crops and flowers grow in the foreground
Photo by Reuters
PINING FOR CHANGE Greenpeace Africa ponders whether a just transition is possible while major emitters continue to be granted large-scale carbon tax allowances

Atlas project to be finalised

By: Cameron Mackay     1st October 2021 Local wind energy collaboration the South African Wind Energy Programme (SAWEP) is in the final stages of completing the Wind Atlas for South Africa (WASA) Phase 3 project this year, says SAWEP project manager Andre Otto. SAWEP is a multiyear technical assistance project, funded by the Global... 

Research shows where, how housing developments are built impact on residents' carbon footprints

By: Creamer Media Reporter      30th September 2021 A new quantitative study on the impact of the location of housing development in Johannesburg on carbon emissions - by the research partnership of Divercity Urban Property Fund and the Green Building Council South Africa (GBCSA) - shows that where and how housing is built in the city has a... 

Africa needs $240bn to transition to clean energy, Ramaphosa says

By: Bloomberg     30th September 2021 Sub-Saharan Africa needs $240-billion for the region to transition to a clean energy, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa told reporters in Johannesburg on Wednesday. “We need grant funding to help us transition,” he said. “If we get the funding we will migrate far quicker to renewable... 

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Rich nations pitch climate aid to fund South Africa coal exit 

By: Bloomberg     29th September 2021 Envoys from some of the world’s richest nations met with South African cabinet ministers on Tuesday to discuss a climate deal that could see billions of dollars put toward ending the country’s dependence on coal. The delegation is trying to hammer out an agreement that can be announced at the... 

‘Just Transition Transaction’ can unlock fiscal space for South Africa’s low-carbon shift

By: Terence Creamer     28th September 2021 A Just Transition Transaction (JTT) that enables South Africa to secure highly concessional finance from rich countries in return for accelerated decarbonisation would help create the fiscal space required to take such a programme forward, a new Meridian Economics study asserts. Released to... 

Photo of the Komati power station
The transaction is seen as complementing Eskom's own Just Energy Transition Transaction, which is meant to start with repowering and repurposing projects at Komati (pictured)

Energy features strongly in IDC’s R24bn pipeline as Patel makes ‘go green’ call 

By: Terence Creamer     28th September 2021 The State-owned Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) is aiming to convert a significant portion of a R24-billion investment pipeline into commitments following a steep fall in both approvals and disbursements during its Covid-afflicted 2020/21 financial year. The development finance... 

A photo of IDC CEO TP Nchocho
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
IDC CEO TP Nchocho

Botswana, Namibia outline efforts towards green bonds, sustainable stock exchanges

By: Donna Slater     28th September 2021 After South Africa, Namibia, through its Namibian Stock Exchange, is the second African country to issue a green bond after signing up to the United Nations’ (UN’s) sustainable stock exchanges initiative, said Namibian Stock Exchange CEO Tiaan Bazuin. Speaking during the Southern Africa Green... 

ESG strategies can build trust, drive sustainable value

By: Schalk Burger     27th September 2021 Organisations can help to build trust and deliver sustained outcomes by implementing effective environmental, social and governance (ESG) strategies and stakeholders tend to place more trust in organisations that demonstrate a sustained interest in communities, the environment and good... 

Green bonds provide balance to traditional investment vehicles

By: Donna Slater     27th September 2021 Compared with traditional impact investment vehicles, which tend to be private equity, green bonds provide a “nice balance” in achieving a desired investment impact, environment, social and governance (ESG) advisory firm EBS Advisory CEO James Brice said during the Southern Africa Green Bonds... 

Significant untapped potential in local waste economy

By: Darren Parker     24th September 2021 The current contribution of the waste economy to South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) could significantly increase if the importance of implementing the waste management hierarchy is fully recognised, says waste management company Interwaste human resources and transformation director... 

A photo of two informal waste reclaimers walking along the road dragging trolleys laden with recyclable waste
Photo by Reuters
UNDERVALUED Informal waste reclaimers perform a much-needed recycling service in South Africa with little support or appreciation

Programme expands into other provinces

By: Darren Parker     24th September 2021 National Cleaner Production Centre South Africa’s (NCPC-SA’s) Industrial Symbiosis Programme (ISP) is on track to be launched in the Eastern Cape and the Free State before the end of the year, says NCPC-SA national programme manager Victor Manavhela. “We are to conclude feasibility studies in... 

A photo of plastic dustbins in the background, which are made from recycled waste plastic and rubber in bags shown in the foreground
REPURPOSED Where one company sees waste, another might see a valuable resource

Pressure on municipalities key to recycle culture

By: Darren Parker     24th September 2021 The quality of waste management in South Africa is improving, but citizens need to continue putting pressure on municipalities and their respective communities – especially in rural areas – to treat waste as a valuable resource that creates employment if collected and recycled. “That’s the only... 

  	A photo of Plastics SA sustainability director Douw Steyn and Clean Surf Project member Smphiwe Shozi picking up litter on a beach
DOUW STEYN AND SMPHIWE SHOZI Plastics SA coordinated South Africa’s participation in the International Coastal Clean-Up Day

Rubble recycling not seen as economically viable

By: Darren Parker     24th September 2021 The recycling of construction and demolition materials in South Africa is behind the global curve, partly because it is generally not viewed as economically viable by the vast majority of local companies operating in the sector, claims crushing and screening equipment supplier Pilot Crushtec... 

A photo of Pilot Crushtec Africa sales manager Fernando Abelho
FERNANDO ABELHO A lack of enforcement means much construction and demolition waste is not suitable for recycling into general aggregate

More ambitious climate target step in right direction, but more work is needed – CER

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd September 2021 The Centre for Environmental Rights (CER) has commended Cabinet’s decision to approve a reduced target range for greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions in South Africa, noting that it is “a marked improvement” from the previous target range proposed by the Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the... 

Risks linked to South Africa’s more ambitious decarbonisation pledge not yet ‘adequately addressed’ 

By: Terence Creamer     23rd September 2021 Minerals Council South Africa has signalled its support for South Africa’s transition to a low-carbon economy, but is concerned that the immediate risks associated with the country’s more ambitious decarbonisation targets are not being adequately addressed. CEO Roger Baxter told participants to a... 

Image from Daylin Paul’s photographic book, titled ‘Broken Land’, a visual narrative of the environmental and social impacts of coal in Mpumalanga
An image from Daylin Paul’s black and white photographic book, titled ‘Broken Land’, which offers a visual narrative of the environmental and social impacts of coal in Mpumalanga

Sustainable ocean economy must be pursued, speakers emphasise

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     23rd September 2021 There are a myriad of challenges facing the ocean economy, but these are not insurmountable, and can be mitigated and managed to ensure sustainable oceans. This is according to speakers on the second day of the Sustainability Summit on September 22, during the Oceans Economy panel discussion. 

Sasol triples 2030 decarbonisation target, makes net-zero by 2050 pledge 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd September 2021 Chemicals and energy group Sasol has announced a material acceleration of its decarbonisation plans, confirming that it will reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 30% by 2030 rather than by the much-criticised 10% level to which it initially committed. CEO Fleetwood Grobler has also pledged... 

Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler

UN chief warns world is facing 'dead end' over climate, Covid

By: Bloomberg     22nd September 2021 United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned the world is hurtling toward ecological destruction, sounding a bleak opening tone to the annual UN General Assembly meeting in New York. Speaking a day after convening world leaders to ratchet up climate commitments, Guterres said Tuesday... 

An image of Antonio Guterres
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

RMB arranges R8.45bn sustainability-linked loan for Mediclinic

By: Simone Liedtke     21st September 2021 Hospital operator Mediclinic has refinanced its existing debt through a new R8.45-billion sustainability-linked banking facility – the first of its kind arranged by a bank in Africa. Rand Merchant Bank (RMB), a division of FirstRand Bank, acted as the lead arranger for the transaction. 

Organisation files climate lobbying resolution for tabling at Sasol AGM

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     21st September 2021 Nonprofit shareholder activism organisation Just Share and investment management company Aeon Investment Management on September 14 co-filed a nonbinding, advisory shareholder resolution with chemicals company Sasol, for tabling at its November 19 annual general meeting. The resolution asks Sasol... 

Study reveals South Africa's weather is becoming more extreme 

By: Donna Slater     20th September 2021 South Africa is experiencing more maximum temperature records than expected – a trend which appears to be accelerating, a study by a University of Pretoria (UP) Department of Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology PhD student Charlotte McBride shows. McBride, of the South African Weather... 

iREREP to have 30-year lead time, private sector to be responsible for technical and financing aspects 

By: Donna Slater     20th September 2021 The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) launched its Integrated Renewable Energy and Resource Efficiency Programme (iREREP) by opening its request for information (RFI) on September 20, saying its 30-year lead time is aligned with government’s National Infrastructure Plan 2050... 

Trade policy can accelerate business emissions reduction – WEF study

By: Schalk Burger     20th September 2021 For businesses to reach their emissions targets, the global trading system needs to adapt and businesses are calling for that change, the World Economic Forum (WEF) states in its 'Delivering a Climate Trade Agenda' industry insights report. Action on trade is necessary for businesses to unlock... 

Cabinet endorses more ambitious carbon pledge ahead of Glasgow summit  

By: Terence Creamer     20th September 2021 Cabinet has approved a revised – and more ambitious – Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) carbon mitigation target range for 2030 ahead of the upcoming COP26 gathering, which will take place in Glasgow, Scotland, in November. In a statement, Cabinet announced that South Africa had revised... 

A road to an Eskom power station
Photo by Creamer Media
Eskom plans to decommission 11 GW of coal by 2030

South Africa adopts lower emission target ahead of COP26 meeting

By: Bloomberg     20th September 2021 South Africa’s cabinet adopted the lower greenhouse gas emission target recommended by a panel set up by President Cyril Ramaphosa. The target, known as the country’s nationally determined contribution, is to keep annual emissions at between 371 and 420 megatons of carbon dioxide equivalent by... 

Emissions

PetroSA mulls geothermal as way to offset ‘decommissioning liability monster’ 

By: Terence Creamer     17th September 2021 Embattled State-owned gas-to-liquids refiner PetroSA is considering plans to harness geothermal energy from its mature or depleted gas wells to produce electricity and delay decommissioning. Addressing a conference in Cape Town this week, Central Energy Fund (CEF) CEO Dr Ishmael Poolo reported... 

PetroSA refinery in Mossel Bay
Photo by Creamer Media
PetroSA refinery in Mossel Bay

New online portal launched to showcase African green recovery projects

By: Terence Creamer     17th September 2021 A new web-based platform, which will showcase green stimulus projects across Africa, has been officially launched. The portal, which can be found at http://agsp.nepad.org/, was unveiled this week by South Africa’s Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy in her capacity as... 

A photo of a solar farm

Association releases new training manual

By: Halima Frost     17th September 2021 Last month, South African Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Contractors Association (Saracca) released its updated training manual, which will be implemented, from this month onwards, by heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC-R) training providers throughout South Africa.... 

Metal pipes of a correctly installed pipe system for the HVACR system
HOW TO... The association has released a new installation manual which will be used by training providers form this month

Refrigeration system to cut energy costs available

By: Halima Frost     17th September 2021 With South African retailers looking for ways of recovering from the latest lockdown, as well as the looting and vandalism, an opportunity to decrease costs on the system that comprises the bulk of their energy spend, which is refrigeration, has arisen. “All food retailers rely on refrigeration... 

A large solar installation on a clients roof installed by EP Refrigeration, which is grid-tied and decreases the clients reliance on grid power
LIGHT WORK Adding a solar installation to a company's refrigeration unit deceases the cost of running the unit off grid power alone
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